AGS: The five top stories in 2014

The top story, the one that affected us all, was the severe and unrelenting winter. Here, road maintenance officials, work to clear the remains of a tree that came down in the ice storm.

As years go, 2014 had its highs and lows, pretty much like those that preceded it. Section C of this paper contains a review of many of the stories with pictures to go with them. But here are the top news items that we are not likely to forget soon.

The never-ending winterThe year just passed held different adventures for different people, but the one thing everyone went through was the severe winter.

It’s the number one story for 2014. It began in December and continued through February, one storm after another. It was not unusual to be shoveling new snow and thrusting it on piles of snow from the week before. At one point, it came down as ice, and several areas endured more than 24 hours without power. Additionally, the trees, weighted down by the ice, came down on the roads, causing driver to have to find routes to their destinations they didn’t ordinarily take.

Jennings resignsRobert Jennings, Lincoln University’s president of less than three years, resigned after criticism of a speech he gave to female students. He told them to be wary of giving false rape reports because they could ruin a young man’s future. Students and the public reacted negatively, saying “Rape is rape.” Shortly after that he tendered his resignation. Jennings’s interim replacement as president is Valerie Harrison, the university’s general counsel. During his term of office, Jennings sought to include the local community in the college’s facilities and activities. He also undertook aggressive fundraising campaigns and announced an acceptance policy that would include students whose academic backgrounds were not outstanding, “But we can do something for them.”

Raziel drowns in pondAvon Grove High School Senior Raziel Mireles drowned in the Anson B. Nixon Park pond after he waded in to retrieve a soccer ball in September. Police said he got caught in the silt at the bottom and was not able to get out.

Local residents, students and St. Rocco Church reached out to help the family provide food for guests in the aftermath and to raise money to help take the boy’s body to Mexico for burial. Raziel was remembered as a friendly youth who lived to help others.

Goodbye to the Brown DerbyThe Brown Derby, a neighborhood restaurant in Toughkenamon that specialized in Italian dishes and huge lobster tails since 1934, closed the business for good this year. The widely recognized building along Baltimore Pike in Toughkenamon was purchased from owners Joe and Lynne Hudock by three men who hoped to modernize it, create an atmosphere that attracts families and provide nighttime entertainment. Olen Grimes, Steve Burkes and Ray Maxwell, all of the Kennett Square area, bought the building on a lease-to-puchase deal with the intention of turning it into Fire Hill Pub, a place that feeds the community and supports it in other ways, they say.

Bette the PigChenoa Manor in London Grove Township is a place where animals live in safety, peace and happiness, but owner Rob Teti and the supporters of that quiet farm were shocked when someone shot Chenoa’s greeter pig, Bette, with bow and arrow in late September. She was taken to New Bolton Center, where she spent a week recovering. She was greeted by humans and fellow animals when she returned in early October. The shooter has not been caught and there is still a reward for his or her arrest.

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